Why Company Values Are Important

At our last company-wide retreat in Santa Cruz, we finally presented something that’s been years in the making: Scripted’s company values.

Like many companies, we have unspoken values. We like to hire scrappy people who enjoy working hard. They’re usually humble and don’t expect special treatment. You feel this humility when you walk into our office, and see it in the way we interact with each other. I’ve always been very proud of this. We have our own way of doing things, and most of the time there is consensus on the path forward.

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However, as we’ve grown, that consensus has been harder to find. We’ll have differing views on prospective job candidates, new and existing office perks, and our product roadmap. When we talked through these problems, we’d sometimes find ourselves talking in circles. We needed a rubric by which to evaluate our most difficult questions and answers. That rubric has become our seven company values.

Here’s the SlideShare version of the original presentation I gave, but there are more details below.

Here are our company values, in no particular order:

  • Scrappiness
  • Passion
  • Intrinsic Motivation
  • Selflessness
  • Friendliness
  • Openness
  • Simplicity

Values create a common language that motivates and bonds us. Values shape and define our company culture, which means that they also impact our growth and productivity. These values that we’ve created and documented dictate how we run our company, and how we work with both clients and employees.

Here are some ways that your own company values can be used in everyday workplace scenarios:

Hiring

Many employers believe in the old saying that you should trade 90 percent of employee talent for 10 percent of character. In other words, character and willingness to fit in with a corporate culture are even more valuable to a company than talent and experience. By using your company values as a guide, you can identify whether a prospective employee has the traits to fit in with the rest of your team. If passion and selflessness are part of your values, make sure that these characteristics are part of your hiring criteria.

Making Tough Decisions and Solving Problems

Company values can help you make important decisions. When solving problems, values can remind you of your priorities and help you get back to basics when things get complicated.

Spending

If you’re wondering how values can play a part in your company spending practices, consider the core meaning of a value like “scrappiness.” Scrappiness means that you’re willing to work in a low-frills environment that prizes concentration and focus over unnecessary distractions.

Launching New Products

Passion plays a huge part in launching new products or services. If you foster a company culture of passion and enthusiasm, it will be evident to your audience, and there’s nothing more infectious than enthusiasm.

Marketing

Values can play a huge part in your marketing campaigns. Consider this: If your company has a reputation for openness and honesty, then you’ve already gone a long way in establishing client trust. It starts with company culture.

Values are the glue that keeps us working together in the same direction, using a common language and motivating factors which we call our Scripted company values.

How does you company establish common values? Share your thoughts with me below.

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